By Modupe Gbadeyanka
One lender deepening the financial inclusion drive of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is no doubt Ecobank Nigeria Limited.
Within three months, the financial institution has expanded its agency banking locations across the nation by 5,000, hitting 35,000 places, according to its Managing Director, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan.
The bank has been able to achieve this feat by putting in place different initiatives, including rewarding its customers and its Xpress Point agents.
“We celebrate our customers for banking with us. They are the reason why we are in business. We are giving them the opportunity to grow their businesses by providing them with convenient banking services.
“We are bringing banking services to every neighbourhood through Xpress points, our agency banking platforms where we presently have close to 35,000 locations across the country. The idea is to support agriculture, real sector activities at the grassroots level.
“We are also supporting family values to promote cohesion and preserve culture. We are supporting our customers to realize their potentials for instance we are reaching out to women through Ellevate, which provides favourable terms for women businesses, and generally, as a pan African bank, we are connecting Africa businesses to the world,” the banker said.
Recently, Ecobank rewarded its customers through the Super Reward Scheme, which is aimed to deepen savings amongst Nigerians, reward and assist customers’ businesses.
Four winners grabbed the star prizes and were N1 million.
The winners were Tsoho Alaye, with an Ecobank Microfinance Special Account representing FCT/Northern Region; Badero Modupe Olufunmilayo, with a Personal Flexi Account, representing Lagos Region; Omiwole Damilare Daniel, with an Ecobank Microfinance Special Account, representing Midwest and South West Region; and Hayford Gogo Lawson, with a Personal Savings Account, representing South-East and South-South.
Mr Akinwuntan, while congratulating the winners as well as the customers who participated in the rewards programme, disclosed that the bank was coming out with several other initiatives such as the Lion’s Den, an SME focused television series to air on DSTV which will afford young entrepreneurs the opportunity to showcase their business potentials that will create new Bill Gates, Dangotes out of Nigeria.
Earlier in her welcome address, Head, Consumer Banking, Mrs Korede Demola-Adeniyi, who congratulated the winners, said the bank initiated the Super Reward Scheme to appreciate its customers, explaining that it was designed in such a way that new and existing customers participated and won cash prizes.
She said, “50 customers with the highest deposit were rewarded with N25,000 every week while four customers with the highest deposit and transaction value within the campaign duration are today going home with N1 million naira each”.
To qualify, according to Mrs Korede Demola-Adeniyi, new customers were expected to open an account with a minimum of N5,000 and maintain the deposit for a 30-day period; the same applied to existing customers, who only needed to fund their active account with a minimum of N5,000 or reactivate their dormant account with a minimum of N5,000 and maintain the deposit for a 30-day period.
She added that at the end of the four months campaign, 800 customers won N25,000 weekly in batches of 50 per week while four millionaires emerged in each of the four delineated regions.
Se enjoined those that are yet to open an account with the bank to do so to enjoy its state-of-the-art digital payments and collections platforms, including its products and services.
One of the winners, Badero Modupe Olufunmilayo, said she was attracted to Ecobank because of its network advantage and excellent service delivery. She promised to be an ambassador of the bank.
On his part, Tsoho Alaye, appreciated the bank’s management for a track record of rewarding customers, affirming that he would continue to do business with the bank and implored every Nigerian who is yet to open an account with the bank to do so to enjoy its seamless service delivery.
Standard Chartered Introduces Smart Business Loan
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A credit facility package targeted at small business owners in Nigeria called Smart Business Loan (SBL) has been introduced by Standard Chartered Bank.
The product was designed to help players in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector meet their short to medium-term needs. It is an unsecured instalment/term loan to business banking clients within key target sectors.
A statement from the lender explained that qualified business banking clients will be able to access up to N20 million loan without providing tangible security/collateral to purchase assets, finance business expansion and other capital expenditure needs.
The maximum tenor for the credit facility is two years, Business Post gathered.
Before now, customers were required to provide full collateral cover to access loans from the bank’s business banking segment but SBL provides the necessary flexibility to its clients.
“As a bank, our purpose is to drive commerce and prosperity in the locations we operate in. This is done through offering cash, lending, trade and wealth management solutions that specifically drive economic growth,” the Head of Consumer, Private and Business Banking (CPBB), at Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria, Mr David Idoru, stated.
“Within our CPBB, the promotion of commerce is largely done through our business banking segment by banking SMEs.
“We are constantly looking for ways to ensure our clients get access to the needed support to enable their businesses to thrive and SBL provides the necessary flexibility for business growth,” Mr Idoru added.
DLM Capital Praises Employees for Global Finance Award
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Employees of DLM Capital Group, a leading developmental investment bank in Nigeria, have been applauded for the award received by the company recently.
DLM Capital was named the Best Development Finance Company Nigeria 2021 by the Global Banking and Finance Review magazine.
The honour was in recognition of the institution’s dedication to providing leadership and excellence in Nigeria’s development finance space.
While commenting on the award, the Head of Investment Banking at DLM Capital, Mr Emeka Ngene, said the honour was made possible as a result of the continuous collaboration of the DLM community.
“It is indeed an honour to receive this recognition from such a prestigious body as Global Banking and Finance Awards.
“We are pleased to be associated with this award which speaks to our dedication and hard work in addition to the expertise and innovative solutions we have implemented over the years.
“This further demonstrates our commitment to designing and implementing developmental funding solutions for the development of the country.
“We are therefore dedicating this award to our team for their continuous support in ensuring that DLM Capital thrives in its pursuit to push the frontiers of developmental capital market solutions in the Nigerian financial ecosystem.
“We are delighted once again to have been identified for our accomplishments among other players across the continent,” he stated.
Since 2011, the Global Banking & Finance Awards has honoured companies that stand out in their various areas of expertise in the banking and finance industry, thereby recognizing the accomplishments and significant revolutions that emerge every year within the global finance community.
Ecobank Offers Back-to-School Loan Packages to Parents
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
The desire to ease the financial burdens of parents and guardians as regards the payment of school fees of their children and wards for the 2021/2022 school year has made Ecobank Nigeria come up with affordable loan packages.
The Head of Consumer Banking at Ecobank Nigeria, Mrs Korede Demola-Adeniyi, explained that the introduction of the credit facility is in line with the lender’s overall strategy to support the development of the nation’s education sector.
A statement from the financial institution disclosed that the loan packages were designed under its back-to-school initiatives and are also available to school owners through special infrastructure loans.
“As a bank that has the interest of its customers at heart especially at this period when schools resume, we understand the importance of education. Children deserve to go to school and we are making it easy for parents to provide them with this basic right,” she said.
Speaking specifically on the loans available for the educational institutions, she noted that they could be accessed without bottlenecks as the bank has taken into cognisance the harsh effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mrs Demola-Adeniyi urged schools to appoint the bank as their preferred financial institution for payments and collections, noting that Ecobank has demonstrated pedigree and expertise in fees collection, locally and internationally.
She further encouraged schools and individuals that are yet to open Ecobank accounts to do so in order to access the offers available.
The banker also said Ecobank’s digital offerings are targeted at reducing the financial burden on parents, students and schools, and also facilitating the ease of payment of fees without hassles.
She listed the digital offerings to include Ecobank Mobile App, EcobankPay and Ecobank Online for contactless fees payment; personal loans and salary advance packages at competitive interest rates, international transfers for offshore school fees payment and affordable remittance offerings.
Mrs Demola-Adeniyi also noted that families abroad who wish to send money home to help with fees can do so at zero charges on the Rapidtransfer app.
The bank has also provided the banking-for-school pack for educational institutions to access working capital and loans. The features of this pack include easy fee collections, zero charges on collection accounts with EcobankPay, secure online banking with Omni Lite and cards for easy payments.
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